Co-Captain Kiley Buckley ’23, “Older Sister” to Girls Basketball

A first time All-Star for the New England Prep Schools Girls Basketball Coaches Association (NEPSGBCA) in the 2021-2022 season, teammates describe Kiley Buckley ’23 as the “backbone” of Girls Basketball. Last season she averaged 12 points per game, ten rebounds, and two assists. Teammates recognize Buckley for her ability to “work the paint,” bring the ball up the floor, and shoot effectively.

Buckley has played basketball for the past decade. She credits pushing herself through times of strife for her love of the sport. Buckley also cites team camaraderie and friendships as another motivation for pursuing basketball. 

“My favorite aspect of basketball, I would say, is the teammates and friendships, but I also think being on the court with those teammates and friends and seeing success, as a team. Especially in close games and when you push it and then end up, being successful throughout the game and winning. But [I] like experiencing that with teammates,” said Buckley.

Head Coach Elizabeth Monroe admired Buckley’s physical strength and her ability to stabilize the team. Her nature of putting in maximum effort seems to inspire her teammates to strive for greatness, according to Monroe. 

Monroe said, “Kiley, in so many ways, is the backbone of this team, and I think what Kiley does is so impressive to all of us, aside from jumping two feet, she always goes out there 110 percent, and that’s something that the other players can really look up to.”

According to Leila Boesch-Powers ’24, Buckley’s upbeat persona always brings out the team’s energy. Boesch-Powers finds her youthful energy and communication crucial to the team’s gametime preparations.

“I would say [that] Kiley is a very fun and humorous, energetic part of the team, both on and off the court. She always makes sure that everybody is included and is very vocal during practice, always encouraging the team. She ensures that we keep energy high, which is always very well-received and very respected. Both on and off the court up off the court as well. She’s very responsible, making sure that everybody is [on] the bus on time and all that,” said Boesch-Powers. 

Akari Imai ’26 commended Buckley’s vocal leadership during practice. According to Imai, Buckley leads by example by providing a positive outlook during practices and encouraging her teammates.

“I think the biggest thing that, especially in practice, is how Kiley is really, really supportive of everyone. Whenever we’re doing drills or scrimmages or something, she’ll always be cheering you on and clapping for you, which I think is really positive as well,” said Imai.

Buckley states that she values supporting her teammates, whether during drills or games. She hopes that her small gestures of encouragement help her teammates approach her, whether it be navigating basketball or school. 

Buckley said, “Making sure that even if it’s just a little bit of cheering, or even clapping… is making sure that they know that I support them and that they feel my support throughout the practices and games, but also on the bus or at school, or really anywhere, that’s making sure that they know that I’m available for them and that I want them to succeed.”

Co-captain Hope Nardone ’23 has been playing with Buckley for three years. Seeing Buckley’s growth, Nardone describes Buckley as a hard worker and an “older sister” to many players.  

Nardone said, “Kylie has great energy. I think she’s close with a lot of the players. She knows how to support people and also have a little bit of fun, which is important in a competitive sport. She’s such a great athlete that she adds so much to our team and our team play. We’re definitely lucky to have her as a collective. I feel like with Lowers, [Kiley is an] older sister to a lot of our players, which is nice, but I think she just kind of has a young, youthful energy. She’s very respectful, but she’s also well spoken. I feel like everyone kind of respects her.”